Thomas Wyatt was born c. 1503, to a good family. His father was the Constable of Norwich Castle. Wyatt was educated at Cambridge University. As an adult, Wyatt proved an adept courtier, and was sent by the king on several missions to Italy, the Vatican, and France. Because of tangential involvement in a conspiracy that he may or may not have even had knowledge of, in 1536 Wyatt was imprisoned for a time in the Tower. While there, he witnessed the speacilaly imported French executioner wield his sword against the neck of Ann Boleyn, and wrote about the event in a Latin poem. On release, Wyatt retired to his country estate in Kent and is known to have produced some of his better poetry there. He was subsequently sent to the Tower again in 1541.